Unequivocally Ambiguous

Humorous Stories on Parenting, Culture and Life

I Chemically Straightened My Hair Because My Family Was Ashamed

by | Jun 1, 2023 | Humor | 0 comments

Parenting and the illusion of reprieve

“Scientifically handsome” is what most anthropologists might call me. I am not vain because there is no need to be vain when you are, well, as scientists put it (and not me, of course), handsome.

So it is easy for me to know I won’t use Rogaine to regrow balding spots if I lose some of my hair, which I doubt I will because I was blessed with a beautiful mane — curly, out of control, and unwieldy but beautiful.

My hair is going white faster than the mountains in Bozeman, Montana, at the beginning of winter. And still, I’m not worried about that, and I won’t be using Just for Men to hide my gray hairs. If my past is any evidence of my future, then I will be an even more handsome silver fox version of my current self.

I saw my grandfather in his early sixties dye his hair for his second wedding, and as much as I love him, I can’t lie. He looked ridiculous. He looked like a 6’2″ scoop of ice cream with a radioactive hazelnut wig.

Colombia, like many other South American countries where plastic surgery is cheap, culturally condones and approves cosmetic enhancements. I saw women in my family getting face tucks, neck tucks, and tummy tucks. There were boob jobs, nose jobs, and butt jobs. There were hair implants, Botox, and fillers.

It confused me because I didn’t see the point in any of that. The women in my family were all beautiful to me. I loved them, and I wished they would’ve accepted themselves for who they were and how they looked.

I decided early on in my life that I’d accept my aging, whether gracefully or ungracefully, without resorting to any artifices to hold on to my youth or hide the devastation of aging.

Now, I didn’t come to this realization as early as I’d like you to believe. 

(Read the rest of this essay on Age of Empathy.)


No sigma: (almost daily) ((always short)) (((NEVER long))) Reflections on art, risk, and creative recovery.

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